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Globster facts

Updated on May 7, 2015

Mysterious unidentifiable carcasses of deceased marine animals, called globsters, are washing up on the shores of oceans and seas around the world, all the time. Some are studied, some are disregarded and some probably go completely unnoticed, but no matter what happens to them globsters are a definite curiosity among cryptozoologists.

Surprisingly little scientific research is done when a globster is found with mainstream science only becoming involved when a carcass generates media attention. This leaves unexplained cases of globsters even more intriguing and exciting. What could be out in the oceans that we don't know about?

Read on for 5 interesting facts regarding globsters and what we think we know about them.

St.Augustine Globster 1896
St.Augustine Globster 1896

5. What Exactly Is A Globster?

A sort of unofficial definition in the field of cryptozoology is that a globster is defined as "an unidentified organic mass which has washed ashore from a body of water". Actually the less easily something is identified the more likely it is to be identified as a globster.

These gelatinous blobs are often only studied by cryptozoologists in the field, but occasionally attract the attention of mainstream science and mainstream media.

Image - An unidentified animal carcass in St.Augustine Florida 1896

Globster in the newspaper
Globster in the newspaper

4. The Name Globster

A naturalist and writer named Ivan T. Sanderson used the term "Globster" to describe an unidentified animal carcass that had washed ashore in Tasmania in 1960. The remains were said to have no signs of bones, no visible eyes and no clear head leading to the very appropriate name Globster.

The name stuck with mainstream media and has been used to describe carcasses with no discernible features which become beached ever since. You have to admit that it is catchy.

Image - An unknown creature washes ashore in an old newspaper headline

Gallery of Globsters

Eye witnesses sketches of the Stronsay beast
Eye witnesses sketches of the Stronsay beast

3. Earliest Recorded Sightings

Although animal remains have be washing up on shore lines around the world since there have been animals in sea there is one clearly recorded incident which happened September 25, 1808 in Stronsay, Scotland that seems to be the first one done so thoroughly.

The Stronsay beast, as it became named, was an astonishing 55 feet in length, 4 feet wide and had an approximate circumference of 10 feet. It was said to have a bristly mane which glowed in the dark when wet and 3 sets of flippers. Armed with these features the creature generate quite a stir and was declared a new species by a local natural history society.

It was some years later determined to be a decaying basking shark carcass. But at 55 feet long it is still somewhat of a natural curiosity considering adult basking sharks average 33 feet in length. That would be one huge shark!

Image - Sketches made by eyewitness in 1808

Giant pacific octopus
Giant pacific octopus

2. Some Explanations for Globsters

Scientists, biologists and zoologists have offered all forms of explanations for unidentified corpses with the technology to back them up. Testing and physical analysis of identifiable remains, such as teeth or bone, has resulted in the following answers.

  • Whale remains - Testing has concluded that many globsters are actually hunks of decaying whale, usually blubber which decays very slowly.
  • Basking sharks - These sharks are perfect candidates to become globsters. They are mostly cartilage and grow to tremendous lengths averaging 27 feet long but having been measured at 40 feet. Imagine the carcass they would leave behind.
  • Giant octopus/squid - More creatures with no bones and whose remains would leave a curious carcass behind. Often a few tentacles will be found to exist when the remains are more thoroughly examined.

Image - Giant Pacific Octopus Purchase Print

Globster found in Chile
Globster found in Chile

1. And the Unexplained...

Many globsters are quickly explained away using modern science. With high-tech labs and sophisticated DNA tests results are available within days. But a few cases remain intriguing even to this very day.

Here are three of the most interesting and curious cases still unsolved today.

  • The Natal Carcass (1922) - On a cool November evening in Margate, KwaZulu-Natal (a seaside resort town in South Africa) a strange and curious creature washed ashore. It was reported this creature was 47 feet in length and was covered in long white fur. This could be explained away as natural decomposition of natural sea life except for one small detail. The creature was witnessed fighting 2 whales earlier that same day, it apparently lost the battle. Not one zoologist had taken to study the monster before it was washed back out to sea 10 days later by high waves.
  • The Gourock Carcass (1942) - Summer on the river Clyde in Scotland was the location of another interesting tale. Seems a creature washed up here that measured nearly 30 feet long and had a long slender neck. It also had signs of four flippers, a flattened head with large pointed teeth. Unfortunately 1942 was wartime and the creature beached in a restricted area so no photos could be taken. The remains were cut up and burned.
  • The Gambian Sea Serpent (1983) - A strange creature (nicknamed Gambo) is washed up on Gambia's Bungalow Beach in West Africa and is found by a wildlife enthusiast and his family and although they have no camera they take extensive notes. They claim the animal to have measured between 15-16 feet long and that it had 2 pairs of flippers. It was also described as having a long pair of jaws containing 80 teeth and black skin. Local traders cut off the creatures head and sold it as a souvenir and then buried the rest of the animal in the sand. An expedition in the 90s to recover the remains was dashed when the team arrived to find a building on the reported resting site.

Image - A globster found in Chile in 2003. It weighed 14 tons and measure 39 feet across.

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